The Crow (1994)

Alex Proyas directs Brandon Lee, Ernie Hudson and Michael Wincott in this comic book revenger where a rocker comes back from the dead on Devil’s Night hunting those who killed him and his bride to be.

I know this movie means a lot to people my age but it left me cold as a teen. I could too readily see the scars where they ‘officially’ transplanted shots and added in body doubles after Brandon Lee’s fatal on-set accident. Watching it in high definition for the first time, I’m pretty sure now there’s three or four further sequences where a stuntman (future John Wick director Chad Stahelski) gives the performance and they just cut around lighting or showing his face. The ghoulish magic trick to resurrect the star and complete the project takes me out of the experience too much. And not to speak ill of the dead, Lee’s performance is all over the shop and rarely showcases his martial arts prowess. Eric Draven’s afterlife persona is like The Joker gone goth, prankster and menace, not particularly likeable or consistent. The world vision is a X rated Batman 1989 on a budget (or a rough early sketch of Se7en rainy dystopia) and the miniature work to achieve this is pretty whack. It is an admirable try at doing a dirty big visual piece of world building for pennies on the dollar but Proyas falls sadly short. The one element the movie gets right, in my book, is the villains. They are pretty interchangeable nihilist scumbags but at least the casting is spot on. Any movie with Wincott, David Patrick Kelly and Michael Massee getting screen time is usually very much my jam. Shame they are weighed down by such grim tragedy in both the general mood and production history. Sad. I struggle to see how anyone fully concentrating on it gets much joy out of The Crow.

4

Check out my wife Natalie’s Point Horror blog https://cornsyrup.co.uk

We also do a podcast together called The Worst Movies We Own. It is available on Spotify or here https://letterboxd.com/bobbycarroll/list/the-worst-movies-we-own-podcast-ranking-and/

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